Friday, January 16, 2015

Congrats to our classmate Stefan on winning the HMS Spelling Bee.
Happy Friday!

We started a new read-a-loud this week called, The Watson's Go To Birmingham-1963. This is a Newberry award and a Coretta Scott King award book. This story takes place in 1963 and has our main character Kenny living in Flint, Michigan with his crazy family. Kenny's parents decide to take a trip to Birmingham, Alabama to visit Grandma. Kenny has never been to the south and is excited. He does not realize that he is headed to one of the darkest moments in American History. This book has the students sitting on the edge of their seats and has led us into many wonderful discussions about the Civil Rights Movement and what it's like to be Kenny. Please ask your child to share with you their thoughts on our new read-a-loud.
 
We've continued our work in our Reader's Notebooks on finding the "Main Idea" of a  non-fiction piece of writing. Our focus this week was working to find important details and taking notes as well as trying our hand at questioning the text. The students are learning a deeper understanding of what they are reading when they can ask questions about the text and discuss their questions and possible answers with a group of peers.
    
Our Opinion Essays are coming along slowly. This week we worked on writing our first paragraphs while focusing on
Main Idea Notes
"grabbing" leads to keep a reader interested. Next week the students will learn how to set up a survey on their Google drive and send out a survey to classmates to include a statistic in their essays.

     
We ended our week by reading a picture book called, Mr. Peabody's Apples. This book has a great message about "gossip" and how damaging it can be to a person. Again, please take a moment to ask your child about how Timmy, the main character, had to make up for the gossip he had started. After our wonderful discussion about this book, Mr Smith and I took the kids to the gym for a wild game of kickball. Fun was had by all!
     Have a fantastic three day weekend!
    

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